Women take center stage in India’s Republic Day parade

This morning, President Droupadi Murmu led the nation in celebrating the 75th Republic Day from Kartavya Path in Delhi, with French President Emmanuel Macron as the Chief Guest. The festivities showcased India’s cultural diversity and military strength under the themes of ‘Viksit Bharat’ and ‘Bharat – Loktantra Ki Matruka,’ with the participation of 13,000 special guests.

A significant highlight of this year’s parade was the unprecedented inclusion of over 100 women artists playing traditional Indian musical instruments like the shankh, naadswaram, and nagada. The event marked the debut of an all-women tri-service contingent marching down Kartavya Path, symbolizing ‘Nari Shakti’ or ‘women power.’ Even the contingents of the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) featured exclusively women personnel.

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The Republic Day parade, commencing at 10.30 am, unfolded over 120 minutes, featuring a combined band and marching contingent of the French armed forces. The Indian Army contingent leading the mechanized column was the historic 61 Cavalry, the only active Horsed Cavalry Regiment globally, led by Major Yashdeep Ahlawat.

The Indian Navy contingent, named Agniveers, included 144 men and women, with Lt Prajwal M as Contingent Commander. The Indian Air Force (IAF) comprised 144 airmen and four officers, led by Squadron Leader Rashmi Thakur.

The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) showcased critical systems and technologies during the parade, focusing on the theme ‘Women power in protecting the nation in all five dimensions—land, air, sea, cyber, and space.’

Notably, the contingents of the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) and Delhi Police were led by women personnel, reflecting diversity and leadership. The parade featured various marching contingents from Border Security Force, Central Industrial Security Force, Central Reserve Police Force, Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Sashastra Seema Bal, and Delhi Police, each under the leadership of competent women officers.